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Manchester Film Festival Program (Exclusive); Prime Video Ratings Guidelines Agreement; ‘The Piano’ Gets Distributor; Malta Rebate Attracts Entertainment Firm — Global Briefs

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Manchester Film Festival Unveils Industry Programme

EXCLUSIVE: Over 20 industry experts will travel to North-West England for the Manchester Film Festival, running March 16-17. Confirmed speakers include Amy O’Hara (Development and Production Executive, Film4), Kate O’Hara (Head of Development, Duck Soup Films), Anu Henriques (Development Executive, BBC Film), Ben Taylor (BFI Talent Executive, FilmHub North), and Phil Guy (Director of UK Marketing at Mubi). Filmmakers, writers, and creatives set to feature include Terri White (screenwriter: Coming Undone), Margot Douglas (Old Hall Films), Sam Oldknow (disability consultant and producer), and Carl Woods (Director: My Everest). Feature panels for the event include ‘Marketing and Selling Your Film,’ ‘Development and Production,’ ‘Making Filmmaking Accessible,’ ‘Screenwriting’ and ‘From Short to Feature.’ Industry Passes are priced at £65 ($78) and include access to the entire Manchester Film Festival, including all film screenings and after-parties.

Prime Video Signs Up To UK Content Ratings Guidelines

Prime Video has signed a deal that will see the streamer move towards age ratings in line with BBFC guidelines. The new agreement with The British Board of Film Classification (BBFC) will help Amazon’s streamer to adapt its ratings for UK customers to reflect BBFC standards. The partners say this will “provide families across the UK with the information they need to make safe viewing decisions.” As part of the agreement, the BBFC will share expertise and insight into the standards when classifying film, video and TV content. Chris Bird, Managing Director of Prime Video UK, said: “At Prime Video, we start with our customers and work backwards. BBFC ratings are recognised and trusted across the UK.”

Fremantle Hopes To Find Tune From ‘The Piano

Fremantle has acquired global rights to Great British Bake Off producer Love Productions’ Channel 4 format The Piano. The show was unveiled at last week’s London TV Screenings, coming after The Piano became Channel 4’s best new format launch for six years, according to Fremantle. It forms part of Fremantle’s Spring Entertainment slate. Hosted by The Traitors’ Claudia Winkleman, The Piano sees talented amateur pianists invited to play on public pianos, sharing their stories and music with the general public. However, what the pianists don’t know is that two acclaimed performers are secretly watching and one pianist will be given a once in a lifetime invitation to play on one of the world’s most prestigious stages. The format was created by The Great British Bake Off’s Richard McKerrow, who described making it as a “creatively exhilarating and uplifting experience.”

Malta Tax Rebate Scheme Attracts ‘Peking Express’ Producer Eccholine

Belgium-based unscripted producer Eccholine is setting up a shop in Malta. The company, which is behind shows such as Peking Express and Desafio, The Box, has created Eccholine Malta thanks to its 40% rebate scheme that unusually applies to reality and entertainment programming along with other genres. “Malta is ideally placed to accommodate international TV productions,” said Eccholine Media Managing Director Axel Boer. “The Maltese authorities have created a financially very interesting framework to incentivize production on the island.” Malta has previously attracted shoots for films such as Jurassic Park and Gladiator and HBO series Game of Thrones

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